News World SBK Superpole interviews Magny-Cours

World SBK Superpole interviews Magny-Cours

Ben Spies Speaks… (1st, 1’37.709)

"The Superpole lap was a great lap, we’ve spent the weekend and the qualifying sessions working more on race tyres and fuel loads and really looking to make sure the bike is ready come Sunday. Superpole was the first time we really got down to banging out a lap and it was a good one. It’s good to see Johnny is up there again, it’s pretty much the same four guys as last time so it should be a good race. I don’t think anybody is going to be getting away and I think it will be settled in the last few laps. I’m pretty confident with the bike so I’m happy going into Sunday."

Jonathan Rea Speaks… (2nd, 1’38.191s)

I knew I had the pace today, but it’s not just me and Ben that are going to be battling it out tomorrow – it seems to be the same culprits up the front again. I wasn’t really sure I had set the pole time because I know just how fast these guys are. But the team is working really well together and the bike is really great. I feel very strong into the first turn and on to the back straight and our race pace is good, so we’ll see what happens in the races tomorrow.

Michel Fabrizio Speaks… (3st, 1m38.1s)

"I’m very happy to be able to start from the front row again. A few minutes before Superpole we unfortunately found a problem with my first bike, the bike I’d been riding, and very comfortable with, up until then. So I had to go out with the second bike for the Superpole. It wasn’t perfect and the qualifiers didn’t give me the feeling that I expected but I did enough to assure myself of a place on the front row. Tomorrow won’t be at all easy for Nori and myself as Spies and Rea both have a great race pace."

Max Biaggi Speaks… (4th, 1:38:235)

"It went well, the first row is a good result," declared Biaggi, "plus, we made some progress with both the suspension and the transmission. As often happens, this year we had to start from zero and so it took a bit more time to get things ready, even though we’re still losing a lot of time at the slowest part of the track where the management of a four-cylinder bike is more difficult. Tomorrow’s race will be very difficult, my competitors are all very fast, but I’ll give it my all, like I always do, and I’m sure that we’ll have a good result."

Noriyuki Haga Speaks… (5th, 1m38.3s)

"I prefer to start from fifth position than fourth because it might allow me to make a cleaner start and take a better line into the first corner. Over the weekend we’ve been working hard to sort the rear suspension in order to improve grip and we’re getting there, although we’ll make a few more changes tomorrow morning in the warm-up so as to be competitive to fight for the win. The first qualifier that I used in the Superpole didn’t help us much but the second was a bit better; I made a few small mistakes but the result isn’t too bad. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow."

Leon Haslam Speaks… (6th, 1’38.625s)

"Overall I am happy because we did the first Superpole session on a race tyre and we got a 1’38.7, and felt comfortable doing it. I didn’t get a free lap in the second session on my first qualifying tyre, so I had to go back in and get another qualifier. So we had to do the final Superpole session on a used qualifier, and that meant we couldn’t push for a front row time. Our aim was to make sure we started on the front two rows and we have a good race set-up, so our confidence is high."

Carlos Checa Speaks… (12th, 1’38.924s)

It has been quite a frustrating day because I have not been able to find where we have any particular problem. But I could not put a very good lap in Superpole, even with the qualifying tyre. The bike is not really bad in any one area, but it’s not really good in any one area. We’ll just have to sit down again tonight and see if we can find anything obvious that we can work on for warm-up tomorrow.

Tom Sykes Speaks… (14th, 1’39.361)

"It was a tough day today. We were making good progress in the qualifying session, and were finding improvements to the bike. Unfortunately in the free practice I had a very strange crash, I’m not sure why it happened at all. When we came out on the second bike the set up was completely different and so it was a struggle to get back on the pace. We don’t have an ideal start position from the grid but if we can get off the line well, we can get in there and fight for the front."

Leon Camier Speaks… (16th)

"From certain standpoints, it didn’t go very well," said Camier. "In the Superpole I made some errors in judgment and I wasn’t able to mount the second racing tyre. Everything else is going well, the feeling with the RSV4 is growing and we found a good alignment. I hope I’ll have a good race, even though I know it won’t be easy."

Ryuichi Kiyonari Speaks… (17th, 1’39.816s)

It is very disappointing to have another shoulder injury here, especially because I was comfortable running in the top six yesterday morning. Hopefully, with a bit more treatment tonight, it will feel a little better tomorrow and we can try to find a little more pace during the warm-up. But, of course, I will try my best in the races, even though they will be very hard for me.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of "365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).

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